THE SELECTION PROCESS
Applicants will be considered for Practical Vocational Training and our bursary programme (E.V. Adams Scholarship).
You will be invited to one of our vacation programmes, which is a week-long interview process where we assess your skills and your fit with the firm. During the vacation programme you will:
- Be assigned to a team where you will do work that a first-year CA would be expected to manage with the partners’ guidance;
- Attend classes to give you an overview of the firm and the work that we do;
- Engage with senior professionals in a social informal setting;
- Complete the following assessments:
- a written exercise on a topical matter
- a group problem solving assignment
- case studies based on real time situations
- debates and interpersonal skills dialogue; and
- Attend an interview with the Graduate Recruitment Committee.
All interactions will be scored and considered when deciding to employ the candidate for Practical Vocational Training.
How to Improve your Chances
At Adams & Adams, applications are reviewed by HR and by the firm’s partners. When applying, understand that you are already engaging with your future employer and supervisor.
Spending time going through the firm’s website is important as it gives you a sense of who they are before submitting your application. Avoid the ‘spray and pray’ method of applying for work – this can be your steppingstone onto the rest of your life, so why waste an opportunity by being careless?
The general rule of thumb for all aspects of your application is that you should ask an objective person with the know-how to read your application before you send it. That means that you must prepare ahead of time and be selective of who this person is.
Your selected person must proof-read your application for typos, gaps in terms of years and activities, spelling and grammatical errors, and so on. Make sure your computer’s language setting is set to South African English, not American when using spellcheck.
Only use abbreviations after you have written out the full name of an organisation or society – not doing so can leave people wondering about your grammar and create confusion.
Always tell the truth in your application; do not exaggerate the extent of your excellence or involvement in your hobbies.
Your Motivational Letter
- A motivational letter should be written in business letter format.
- Tailor your motivational letter to the firm you are applying for. It does not bode well with the firm you are applying to if you take half a page of your letter raving about a good time you had at another firm. Only take the highlights of your previous experience and tell the new firm why you would be an asset to them. Nobody wants to be the second choice.
Your Curriculum Vitae
Make your application to us standout. Try not to make it too brief, but instead include information about yourself that is both interesting and makes you stand out as an individual. We believe in work-life balance – you are more than just your law qualification. Please share this with us.
- The font you select must be easy to read; we recommend Arial or Calibri 10 pts to 12 pts.
- Do not overuse capital letters – only use them where necessary.
- Tailor your CV to the inherent requirements of the role you are applying for. Your CV should talk to what the firm stands for, and how you will add value with your appetite for learning.
- Give as much detail about your achievements as possible – you do not want the recruiter wondering about your level of engagement in matters you were involved in.
- Set information out in bullet points rather than long paragraphs.
- Compulsory community service that your university requires from you is not voluntary – do not use this to state how much you look after the less fortunate.
- Most students join several societies and bodies with different causes yet do not apply themselves to these. Do not make that mistake, be selective and ensure that you only choose what speaks to you and your personality and become fully immersed in it.
- Generally, the students who apply for Practical Vocational Training (PVT) do not have work experience, typically leaving high school and going straight into university. If this does not apply to you, give information on the activities you engaged in when you were not at university.
- Your references must be contactable, and you must seek their permission before including their names and contact information in your CV. They must know you personally and be able to give positive information regarding your work ethic to a future employer. Do not use a relative as a reference unless you have engaged with them in a work capacity.
Your Senior Certificate and Academic Transcripts
- Make sure that the Commissioner of Oath does not stamp over your marks and that the quality of the photocopy is clear.
- Do not password protect your documents – it is burdensome on the recruiter and not necessary.
The marked assignment gives us a view of your writing style and your articulation. Submit work that you are proud of that will enable the reader to glean your communication skills.
Tracking your Application
It is your career. Own it!
Make sure that your application is complete before submitting it – not having all the documents attached to one e-mail can result in your application being rejected. Click once on the send button – do not flood the recruiters’ inbox with multiple applications. If there is a need for updated information, the recruiter will contact you.
Always check your potential employer’s rules on responding to applications – if they say they will respond within 14 days – follow up after the days prescribe to find out if your application has been received.